Archive for March, 2011

Can I get ARD in Berks County when I am charged with two seperate cases?

Wednesday, March 30th, 2011

I recently represented a client in the Berks County Court of Common Pleas charged with two criminal cases – a DUI and a Simple Assault/ Terroristic Threats – at the same time. A 32 year old father of five with a rock solid employment history had found his life spinning out of control after discovering his spouse’s infidelity.  With a first time DUI charge he was facing a mandatory 3 day jail sentence and a one year driver’s license suspension if convicted. Additionally, his simple assault and terroristic threats case involved possession of a (legal) firearm, so under the sentencing guidelines he was looking at a county jail sentence.

We proceeded to a preliminary hearing on the Assault/ Threats case. I successfully argued for a dismissal of the terroristic threats charges and the simple assault count was held for court. Subsequently, we waived the DUI charge and applied him for ARD in that case. Both cases proceeded to Common Pleas but in front of different Judges with two different Assistant DA’s assigned. Then came some bad news – I received a plea offer of 3 to 23 months in the Assault case and a denial of ARD in the DUI case.
Through negotiation with the ADA in the Simple Assault case, I was able to secure a revised plea offer of 2 years probation. I then filed an ARD reconsideration letter with the Berks County District Attorney for the DUI case. In my letter I outlined my client’s background and the unique circumstances of his cases. I stated clearly my goal in the matters: ARD on the DUI case and 2 years concurrent probation on the Simple Assault case. Thankfully, the District Attorney agreed that this request was reasonable given the circumstances. In the end, I was able to help my client avoid jail time and a legnthy license suspension.

The answer to the question that forms the title of this post is “yes.” But only if you retain diligent and persistent counsel. We regularly obtain the most favorable results for our clients. If you or someone you love is charged with a criminal case in Berks County or throughout Central or Southeastern Pennsylvania give us a call for a free consultation.

Favorable Plea Deal Negotiated in Reading PA Drug Case

Wednesday, March 23rd, 2011

Today, I (Attorney Dan Nevins) was able to negotiate a favorable sentence for a client in a case involving two deliveries of cocaine to an undercover detective. He had been facing two mandatory minimums – one a three year weight mandatory and another two year school zone mandatory. I was able to secure a concurrent sentence of two to four years state prison with my client eligible for early parole at the expiration of 18 months under the RRRI program. In the end, given the particulars of his situation, this was the best possible result for the client and his family.
We pride ourselves on our courtroom advocacy and success in trial. However, the fact remains that most criminal court cases ultimately result in plea negotiations. So we are also very proud of our ability through the litigation process to position our clients for favorable deals. If you or a loved one is facing a criminal prosecution in Berks County PA, please call our office for a free consultation.

Pulled over for a DUI in Berks County?

Wednesday, March 23rd, 2011

Unfortunately, every night a motorist in Berks County PA gets stopped on suspicion of Drunk Driving.  The stop may occur at a DUI checkpoint, after a minor traffic violation or perhaps a motor vehicle accident.  The officer will notice the DUI indicators – blood shoot eyes, slurred speech, odor of alcohol and ask the motorist to step out of the vehicle.  The driver will then be subjected to a series of field sobriety tests – the finger to nose test, one legged stand and walk and turn.  A preliminary breath test is done and the driver finds himself in the back of a patrol car on the way to the DUI center to have his blood drawn.  Later, he is told to call a friend to pick him up and he’s sent on his way.

The next day the driver is going to start to wonder what’s going to happen.  Am I going to be charged with a DUI?  Am I going to jail?  Am I going to lose my license?  What about my car insurance?  It’s important to contact an experienced Berks County DUI attorney as soon as possible to get the answers to these and other questions.  The attorneys at Ebner, Nevins and McAllister have successfully handled thousands of Berks County DUI and traffic citation cases.  We work closely with our clients to ensure that they are fully engaged in the process while suffering the absolute minimum of adverse impact.  If you or a loved one has been pulled over on suspicion of Drunk Driving in Berks County, PA you should not delay:  Call our office at once for a free consultation.

Successfully Fighting for ARD in Client’s DUI Case

Thursday, March 17th, 2011

Many months ago, I (Attorney Ryan McAllister) began to represent a client charged with a first (1st) offense DUI under 75 Pa.C.S.A. 3802(c).  My client was facing a mandatory three (3) days in Berks County Prison in addition to a 12-month license suspension.  After reviewing the facts of the case as well as the discovery documents, I informed my client that there were no pretrial suppression issues to argue, and his best bet would be to file for the Accelerated Rehabilitative Disposition Program (ARD).  The only problem was my client previously completed the ARD Program for an assault case two (2) years ago.

Nevertheless, I still applied my client to the ARD Program at the preliminary hearing.  As expected, though, my client was initially denied from the program based on his prior ARD.  In response, I promptly drafted a letter to the District Attorney explaining my client’s situation.  My client works full-time for a local manufacturing company, and he could not afford to lose his license for 12 months.  Moreover, my client had no interest in spending three (3) days in Berks County Prison.

Shortly after sending my “reconsideration” letter, I got a response indicating that my client was approved for the DUI ARD Program.  Just a few days before my client was going to be placed on the DUI ARD Program, though, in a stroke of unbelievably bad luck, my client was arrested and charged with a misdemeanor assault case.  This immediately made my client ineligible for the DUI ARD Program.  I continued my client’s DUI case to a later court date, and focused 100% of my efforts on getting the assault case dismissed.  Luckily, I was able to get all of the charges against my client in the assault case dismissed at the preliminary hearing, and I was also able to secure my client’s placement onto the DUI ARD Program in his DUI case.

Even though the process took several months longer than usual, my client was extremely happy with the outcome of his case.  No jail time, no conviction, no record, and a significantly reduced license suspension.

If you or someone you know is charged with Driving Under the Influence (DUI) in Berks County, Pennsylvania, please contact my office to setup a no-cost consultation.  I would be happy to discuss the various strategies I use to keep clients out of jail and minimize their license suspensions.

Favorable Sentence Negotiated in Berks County Burglary Cases

Friday, March 11th, 2011

Today I represented a client on a guilty plea and sentencing in the Berks County Court of Common Pleas. The young man was charged in a string of eight separate burglaries along with multiple counts of conspiracy, theft, criminal mischief, trespass and so on. Prior to retaining counsel he had made admissions to the Police regarding his involvement. Based on this and other evidence it was quickly apparent that guilty plea negotiations would ensue. After many months of discovery and discussions with police, detectives and the assistant district attorney I was able to secure a time served county sentence followed by a period of probation.

The attorneys at Ebner, Nevins & McAllister pride ourselves on our effective trial advocacy and criminal litigation skills. We believe there is nothing better in our professional lives than hearing the words “Not Guilty.” That being said, the large majority of criminal cases in Berks County and across Pennsylvania are resolved through guilty plea negotiations. We have years of experience in obtaining favorable sentences for clients in Berks County and across southeast Pennsylvania. We know what the Judges are considering when passing a sentence and we thoroughly prepare our clients for what to expect. If you or a loved one has been charged with a crime in Berks County, PA do not hesitate to contact our office to schedule a free consultation.